Staying "Au Courant"

Time Flies - Staying Things are moving fast, incredibly fast. I keep hearing peers, colleagues, friends and family commenting on how fast paced life has become. I personally often find myself not knowing what day of the week it is, let alone determining the actual timing of past events, which may have taken place only a week ago, yet somehow seem to be several months ago in occurrence. This mind blazing pace is a challenge at many levels. For marketers it’s especially challenging as staying current on cultural norms, trends, fads, news, etc. often seems beyond reach. Yet it’s vital to stay up on the latest what’s what in relation to developing relevant messaging and marketing solutions that will resonant with target audiences while it’s still valid.

The question is, just how does one stay current on culture when it’s moving 300 hundred miles per hour? The answer seems to be to slow down a bit, take a break from your normal routine (these days, that’s mostly work for me) and be sure to leave your mobile device behind. The simplest way to describe the concept is to “plug in” which requires you to “unplug”. Here are some quick ways to make it happen:

  • Spend time with younger people – They are a connection to youth culture and what the future will be like
  • Get out more – Take walks, talk to random people and take notice of what’s going on outside your door
  • Watch TV – Watch the shows that everyone is talking about. Also watch a few that no one seems to mention
  • Stay current on issues and news – Read blogs, RSS feeds, AllTop, Google Reader, CNN, etc.
  • Don’t isolate yourself to the confines of your personal taste – Appreciate the style and tastes (or lack there of) of others
  • Be curious, study people – We are all different in our own way, but part of one great consciousness
  • Choose your information outlets wisely—you only have so much time

In addition to these tips, we thought it would interesting to share Chris Guadarrama’s (Rhythm’s Senior Designer) input on this topic. He is, hands down, one of the most current, up to date staff members at Rhythm Interactive.

Señor Designer at Rhythm Interactive

Here’s how Chris does it:

  • He follows the right people on Twitter (designers, resources, friends, thought leaders)
  • His Facebook network consists of friends from design school and colleagues. Information caters to professional and personal interests
  • Chris’s RSS feeds are fully stocked like beer in his fridge
  • He utilizes social networks & professional networks to stay in the loop on both sides of the life balance equation
  • Chris feels that social media has been a catalyst for connecting to others and learning about them

A few words from Chris: “I don’t have to spend hours trolling forums like geeks used to do to find the best resources/links. Cool things come to me now through various Internet channels like Facebook, Twitter, RSS feeds, etc.”

Staying current is important to be effective in the advertising and marketing game. We hope that this article will help you stay ahead or at least on pace with the speed of culture.

In closing we want to share the new nerd cultural movement. It’s novel, a little weird and strange, but it is current, relevant and worth knowing about…Click here to check it out.

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